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SubjectRe: [PATCH] Documentation: Fix NUL termination of strncpy
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On Tue, 17 Nov 2009 12:25:03 GMT, Pádraig Brady said:

> You need to explicitly NUL terminate strncpy():
> http://www.pixelbeat.org/programming/gcc/string_buffers.html

Umm. Actually, no. It's *nice* if you explicitly do it. However, it's
not strictly *required*. Consider this code:

struct a {
int b, c;
char d[20];
}
bzero(a,sizeof(a)); /* voila! a->d[19] is now a \0 */
Perfectly valid and we do it all the time. Your referenced web page comments
that using memset() or bzero() is inefficient - I wonder if they actually
*tested* the difference between using one memset() or bzero() on a large
structure compared to lots and lots of explicit initialization statements
(i-cache issues probably most important there). The downside is that there's a
greater chance of some programmer refactoring code and bollixing it up. (The
astute reader will remember a short thread about this not too long ago.. :)

And if you're truly careful and always use the strn- variants of the string
functions, it's actually possible to *not* null-terminate the strings. But
it results in very brittle code and makes Baby Andrew cry, mostly because when
somebody adds a printf() to debug the brittle code, it suddenly becomes even
more brittle... :)
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